A little black hen, out for a stroll. Maybe she's taking in the last of the fall colors. Our November has shifted to brown and gray now, but we had a really beautiful, more colorful than usual, season. The hens at our house are almost finished regrowing their feathers after their molt. I bet they wish they had started a little earlier this year. They could have used scarves and bonnets the last few weeks. .
On a sadder note, I have been reading Temple Grandin's latest book, Animals Make Us Human, and it's a reminder that for those of us who care about and for animals, death is not always or even often the ultimate form of cruelty. The life of the animal is where so much of the cruelty happens. I was vegetarian for many years before becoming vegan. I thought consuming eggs and dairy was somehow less cruel than other animal products because the animal didn't physically die to give me that product. But actually, laying hens endure some of the most terrible conditions in the industry, and by the end of their "productive" lives, they are worth so little that many producers do not even bother to "process" them. They are not worth the trouble of putting out of their misery. It's something to think about. The closer we can get to our food production the better. Knowing where your food comes from, and what sort of life the animal had -- it's worth putting your money where your mouth is, so to speak.